Bar Mezzana Has an Avocado Toast-Inspired Cocktail
It's (almost) perfect for the post-holiday diet you are planning.
After all the cookies, eggnog, roasted meats, and rich sides that tend to accompany the winter holidays, many among us will think about lightening things up in January. This is a healthful and virtuous thing to do! I support you. But I also love cocktails, and I think you do, too.
The team at Bar Mezzana is here for you with one of their newest cocktails: Smoothie Moves. With a house-made avocado vodka and a spicy breadcrumb rim, the anytime drink is like avocado toast in a glass.
Love it or roll your eyes at it, there’s no denying that avocado toast has been one of the prevailing food trends of the last few years. And there’s good reason for that: Avocados are delicious, for one, and they’re also rich in vitamins, fatty acids, and monounsaturated fat, which helps lower bad cholesterol and the risk of heart disease.
At Bar Mezzana, beverage director Ryan Lotz aims to have at least one green drink—a cocktail, not a meal-replacement smoothie—on his menu every time he updates it.
“We want the drinks to have visual appeal, so folks see the drinks and are intrigued by them, just like we did with crudo,” he explains.
Since most cocktails are brown, clear, maybe red, opaque—not green—verdant drinks are definitely noticeable. The green goal has resulted in a few different innovations at Bar Mezzana, like a snap pea syrup for a drink called Peas and Thank You.
When the bar staff was planning the most recent green drink, which debuted during Hanukkah and will stick around for the next couple months, they were simultaneously brainstorming some brunch drinks—so avocado toast was obviously front-of-mind.
They started playing off that idea, as well as green drinks (the non-alcoholic kind). The cocktail couldn’t be too rich as to overpower the nuances of Bar Mezzana’s crudo, but avocado also has a delicate flavor, Lotz says. So it took some experimenting. The end result features a squeeze of fresh lime, and a house-made, kale syrup as the bittering agent.
“Kale has a really different bitter flavor than you usually get in cocktails,” Lotz says. “Typically it’s [bitterness from] herbs and barks, but kale is this dark, leafy green, vegetal flavor.”
For the vodka, an infusion didn’t work, because the avocado flavor is just too light. So the team blended ripe avocados into the vodka, then strained it, which not only gave the desired flavor, but also a smooth, pleasant texture, Lotz says.
The drink itself is more akin to a smoothie than avocado toast, Lotz acknowledges. But to nod to the original inspiration, before serving, the coupe glass is lightly rimmed in fresh breadcrumbs mixed with a little cayenne pepper.
Smoothie Moves ($13) is available at Bar Mezzana all the time—from weekend brunch, to dinner, to the new bar menu. Lotz suggests pairing it with the salmon crudo. The savory cocktail stands up to the fattiness of the fish, he says, and the bright flavors play well with the dish’s green chili salsa verde.
360 Harrison Ave., Boston, 617-530-1770, barmezzana.com.